Post # 1
So, after a lot of thought and discussion, the Fiance + I are leaning heavily towards not having a DJ at the wedding reception. Basically, we want to listen to a lot of our music the majority of the night (stuff most DJs typically won’t have) and create our own playlists via an iPod. Neither of us are dancers (or any family or friends, really) so while there will be room for people to dance (the venue’s floor is all hardwood so we can have as much or little space as we want), we don’t see the point in paying someone to play music we can do ourselves. A lot of my friends work or have worked in bars, so are comfortable in making announcements, etc. I don’t plan on doing any over-the-top garter tosses/wedding games either.
We are still doing a first dance (Meet Me in the City by the Black Keys) + a father/daughter dance and will have upbeat, dancing music after dinner, but I’m worried if that’s enough? For the most part, we just want people to eat great food, drink + socialize. We are also in a trendier part of Minneapolis so our younger crowd can hit the bars later. My worry is that it’ll be 9:30 PM and everyone will have left.
Do you think I need to do something additional to make up for the lack of a DJ? Photobooths are cool, but so many people do them these days…I was thinking about a food truck, but I don’t think that’s an option in December.
Any advice would be much appreciated. I’ve been googling for weeks and can’t really come up with any unique indoor ideas.
Post # 3
@anabell465: I’m not doing a DJ. One of my groomsmen actually offered to MC some things for me. He’s going to do some introductions, tell us when it’s time to eat, cut the cake, etc. And there’s a game I really wanna play that I’ll have him do. (The bride and groom each hold a shoe of each and sit back to back and the MC asks funny questions like who takes longer to get ready, etc.) But as for the rest, we are working on compiling playlists to put on the IPad. keep in mind there will be situations you dont expect so make a playlist for everything.
People aren’t dancing and we want them to.
People are dancing and we want things to calm down a bit.
Dinner music (lots of frank sinatra and elevator music being played during this time)
Lets get the kids on the dance floor (I got a feeling, The lazy song, etc)
Just try to think of every scenario you could come across, and you should be fine.
My wedding is 3 months after yours so we’ll be doing a lot of planning at the same time. keep me in mind and we can bounce ideas off each other.
Post # 4
I will probably playlist-DJ ours… I have some experience DJ’ing from playlists though. I “DJ” for the local West Coast Swing community about once a month.
My advice would be to get a free BPM analyzer, run all your music through it and then to make sure that you have the speed ramping up-and-down. eg, BPM would go something like: 90-98-112-120-125/130-91-97-110-123-89-etc. and have a nice mix of music styles throughout. On the other hand, since you said that no one really dances and I guess you aren’t worried about literally keeping them on the dance floor for hours – Just pump the music all night 🙂
Post # 5
We’re not having a DJ, instead I’m renting a PA system from a friend and making a playlist on my ipod. It will be fine and no one would notice.
The only advice I have, is that it’s fine to listen to songs that you and Fiance love, but that you’re hosting a lot of other people as well so it’s important to have a high percentage of songs that everyone knows and likes.
For me, we’ll be playing jazz for probably the first hour, then a good mix of newer songs, motown, and classic rock. (The party is in Downtown Detroit.) But of course, we’ll throw in a few of *our* songs.
Post # 6
We didn’t have a DJ- just borrowed an amp and some wireless mics and had two friends make the announcements.
It worked really well! although we did have about 12 different playlists for the various stages of the evening. We also spent hours going through our own personal playlists to add things to the joint list based on what would be a dance floor filler or killer, and what the majority would know and be familiar with. It was fantastic having our own choice of music- especially as a DJ would probably not have had a lot of the songs we wanted.
As for indoor ideas- we sectioned off a little area of our Marquee and instead of having a photo booth, had a themed photo room with a smart phone printer. The room was full of old fashioned victorian and 1930’s costumes and props such as top hats, fedoras, fur stoles, pipes, tommy guns, canes and long gloves as well as fabric drapes over the walls, a baby armchair and gilt mirrors on the walls. People were then able to dress up as much or as little as they liked and snap the pictures on their or friends smart phones and print them off once they had a photo they liked. It went really well! the room was constantly in use all evening and it was much cheaper than a photo booth 🙂
Post # 7
We had our reception in a suite overlooking the Vegas strip. We thought about having a DJ but heard that some of the parties actually got shut down b/c of the noise and we didn’t want to chance it.
We prepared an IPod playlist since the suite had speakers throughout it and we were going to do a slideshow of us on the big TV. But people were having a good time just talking and drinking so we never actually did the slideshow or music. Our guests even thought that the reception didn’t last long enough…4 hours. So I’d def. forget the DJ.
Post # 8
We’re not doing a DJ, ipod for us 🙂
Post # 9
We’re not having a DJ either, actually i have no idea what we will do to be honest. We are having our reception in the alfresco area of a pub (not a sportsbar)
Post # 10
Thanks, everyone, for all of the suggestions! I feel a lot less anxious about everything–I definitely like the ideas about having several different playlists. We were originally thinking of just (2)-one for cocktails/dinner and one for dancing- but I like having a few ‘themed’ lists to fall back on or use for different sections of the evening.
We will definitely be mixing in universal music for all of our guests to enjoy, and not just our own tastes, but it’s nice to be able to play songs that wouldn’t/couldn’t otherwise be played. I’ll be logging in many hours this summer finding songs:)
@RedLassie- Your photo room sounds awesome! I will have to see what I can come up with at our venue!
Post # 11
A friend of mine had a DJ but guests kept on requesting songs to which they liked dancing so I figured she could have well had an IPOD playlist.
Maybe you can ask your guests for song ideas and what type of music they prefer? It will help you come up with a playlist and at the same time have a variety of music genre